The act of beginning---of actually showing up at the page---can be simple. Just remember these simple truths:
1. Writing doesn't have to be perfect on the first try. It isn't about sitting down with crystal clear knowledge of what you're going to say. It's not about thinking something up. It's about jotting something down---an idea, an image, a story.
2. Writing never has to be perfect. Whether you're writing a story or an essay, you have one goal: convey an idea. You can do that most effectively by being yourself and remember that, as Danielle LaPorte says, every masterpiece could have been better.
3. The best writers rewrite and revise... again, and again, and again. Story goes that Hemingway rewrote the ending to Farewell to Arms 39 times. So why expect your writing to be perfect on the first try?
4. We're all born storytellers---each and every one of us. Talking to a spouse or significant other. Talking to a friend. Even talking to our dogs, we are always telling stories. Writing is simply the process of putting the stories we tell on paper. And that's exciting, because it gives us the opportunity to dig deeper and reach more people.
So take three, slow, deep, calming breaths, and then? Simply. Begin.